SlimShots (Dhs200 for a 30-day supply; slimshots.com) is a sugar-free appetite suppressant that promises to help users ‘eat up to 30 percent less every day!’ Europeans are crazy for it, claiming it quashes cravings with none of the requisite over-the-counter side effects (junkie jitters, midday runs, etc.), but I had my suspicions. When embarking on a fad diet, I expect to see a foot-long list of multisyllabic chemicals and stimulants – not a bunch of hippie-dippy au naturel oat and palm extracts that ‘trick’ the brain and lower intestines into believing you’re full. But OK, I’d been feeling a bit rotund this summer – I was game.
SlimShots are designed to be taken with coffee, mixed into cereal or slurped on their own. I tried the latter – knocking it back like a shot of cough syrup – but the artificial vanilla flavour left my mouth feeling like an oil slick. The taste was far milder – nutty and delicious even – when stirred into a cup of coffee. So for the next 19 days, that’s how I drank it, as a finishing touch on my milky regulars. Often, by the time lunch rolled around, I wasn’t hungry; what I craved was another SlimShot-laced coffee.
I was eating less. But I can’t tell if it was because of the SlimShots or because I was guzzling my weight in caffeine. By the end of the 20-day experiment, I’d lost exactly two pounds – but my clothes felt looser and my stomach flatter. I didn’t work out and never altered what I ate, but I felt considerably less tempted by any calorific treats that wormed their way into the office. My waist didn’t shrink to Guinness Book proportions, but there was something infinitely more satisfying (and effortless) about SlimShots than other lentil-and-bran regimes. Specifically, that I didn’t spend all day glued to the toilet.